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Mayor’s column: winter safety tips

Mayor Colleen Bianco Bezich gives tips to stay safe in the winter

Special to The Sun

Hello Neighbors,

The New Year has gotten off to a rainy start with the January 9 storm that brought heavy rains and high winds to the Borough. PSE&G had damage to one of its substations, leaving 80% of Borough residents without power for several hours, some for nearly 24 hours. With Meteorologists forecasting a rainy and possibly snow-filled winter for the Delaware Valley, I wanted to share Winter Safety Tips from our Borough’s Public Safety Team, including Chief Cutler, Chief Gorman, and OEM Coordinator Linda Harrington.

Fire Safety Tips:

  • Home Vents: Confirm that all vents from your house are clear of snow to prevent Carbon Monoxide build-up.
  • Maintain Heaters & Chimneys:  Have these cleared and inspected annually.
  • Space Heaters: Plug space heaters directly into outlets; do not use extension cords.
  • Home Detectors: Check that Fire and Carbon Monoxide detectors are working properly
  • Fire Hydrants: Clear snow away from fire hydrants near your home.
  • Use Caution during an Outage: Only use generators, camp stoves, and charcoal grills outdoors and at least 20 feet away from windows. Never use a gas stovetop or over to heat your home.

Preparing for a Power Outage:

  • Emergency Kit: Create a kit with flashlights, portable chargers or power banks, battery-operated radio, and charged portable mini-lights in case of an extended power outage.
  • Know your Medical Needs: have a plan for medical devices powered by electricity and refrigerated medicines.
  • Food & Water Supplies: Create an emergency kit; 1 gallon of water per person per day for several days, plus several days of non-perishable food with a manual can opener,

Car Safety Tips:

  • Gas Tank: Make sure you have a full gas tank in case of evacuation or power outages; a full tank will keep the fuel line from freezing.
  • Car Maintenance: Ensure your car is in good working condition, including tires; have treads checks.
  • Vehicle Emergency Supply Kit: Create a kit withjumper cables, flares or reflective triangles, an ice scraper, a car cell phone charger, a blanket, cat litter, or sand for better tire traction.

For more information about preparing for storms and disasters, visit FEMA’s website, www.Ready.Gov. During emergencies, the Borough uses its APP, Haddonfield Happenings, to disseminate accurate and timely information to residents; the App is free and available for any smartphone. If you should need the Haddonfield Public Safety team, dial 9-1-1 first for life-threatening emergencies; the Police non-emergency dispatch number is 856-429-3000.

With gratitude and wishes for a safe winter,

Mayor Colleen Bianco Bezich

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